Anwar questions Perikatan Nasional’s legitimacy

(MMO) – Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has once again disputed the legitimacy of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government after its Supply Bill was passed in Parliament with a razor-thin majority.

The Opposition Leader highlighted that the Supply (Reallocation of Appropriated Expenditure) Bill 2020 only received 111 votes in favour against 106 against in the 222-member Parliament.

“The legitimacy of the current PN government has once again raised questions and disputes following the vote.

“Will this government endure with just the support of 111 MPs or will there be more episodes of enticement along with threats or position offerings?” Anwar said in a statement here.

Anwar added that Pakatan Harapan, now in the Opposition bloc, will not falter in its struggle but would instead continue to fight for the people’s mandate with renewed strength, vigour and dedication.

“PH also aims to continue in its effort to be the voice of the people in Parliament while upholding its pledge to return the people’s mandate,” he said.

Meanwhile, Anwar said PH was satisfied with the reasons given by three MPs aligned to the pact who were absent during the vote on grounds that they were occupied with the Sabah state election set to be held next month.

The five absent MPs were Datuk Seri Maximus Ongkili (PBS-Kota Marudu), Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah (Umno-Gua Musang), Datuk Seri Wilfred Madius Tangau (Upko-Tuaran), Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal (Warisan-Semporna) and Christina Liew (Harapan-Tawau).

On July 21, Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz tabled the Supplementary Supply (2019) Bill 2020 as well as the Supply (Reallocation of Appropriated Expenditure) Bill 2020 in the Lower House to reallocate RM7.18 billion to facilitate the restructuring of the PN Cabinet.

According to Tengku Zafrul, this would not involve additional allocations and would be taken from the existing budget and savings.

The application for allocation was following the restructuring of a few ministries, establishment of several new ministries, and the dissolution of one ministry in line with the formation of the new cabinet on March 10, 2020.

The additional expenditure was applied for the Prime Minister’s Department totalling RM310.62 million, Treasury (RM17.25 million) and Treasury General Services (RM2.41 million).

The allocation was also for the National Unity Ministry (RM240.45 million), Rural Development Ministry (RM189.16 million), Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (RM102.60 million), as well as the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (RM10 million).

The rest of the allocation are for the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (RM12.41 million), Ministry of Environment and Water (RM306 million), Ministry of Housing and Local Government (RM70.37 million), and the Ministry of Higher Education (RM5.92 billion).